World Health Day 2017
Depression: Let’s talk
World Health Day, celebrated on 7 April every year to mark the anniversary of the founding of the World Health Organization, provides us with a unique opportunity to mobilize action around a specific health topic of concern to people all over the world.
Mental health is integral to our well-being and as important as being physically healthy. The growing incidence of mental health issues is a reflection of the reality that confronts us today. That is why the theme for this year’s World Health Day campaign is depression.
Campaign slogan is: Depression: let’s talk.
What is depression?
Depression is an illness characterized by persistent sadness and a loss of interest in activities that you normally enjoy, accompanied by an inability to carry out daily activities, for at least two weeks. In addition, people with depression normally have several of the following symptoms: a loss of energy; a change in appetite; sleeping more or less; anxiety; reduced concentration; indecisiveness; restlessness; feelings of worthlessness, guilt, or hopelessness; and thoughts of self-harm or suicide.
- Living with someone with depression?
- Worried that your child is depressed?
- Worried about the future? Preventing depression during your teens and twenties
- Wondering why your new baby is not making you happy?
- Staying positive and preventing depression as you get older
- Do you know someone who may be considering suicide?
- Do you feel like life is not worth living?
Who we are targeting
Depression can affect anyone. So this campaign is for everyone, whatever your age, sex, or social status. At the World Health Organization, we have chosen to pay particular attention to three groups that are disproportionally affected: adolescents and young adults, women of childbearing age (particularly following childbirth), and older adults (over 60s).
Materials targeting these audiences are available in the campaign materials.
- Depression is a common mental disorder that affects people of all ages, from all walks of life, in all countries.
- The risk of becoming depressed is increased by poverty, unemployment, life events such as the death of a loved one or a relationship break-up, physical illness and problems caused by alcohol and drug use.
- Depression causes mental anguish and can impact on people’s ability to carry out even the simplest everyday tasks, with sometimes devastating consequences for relationships with family and friends.
- Untreated depression can prevent people from working and participating in family and community life.
- At worst, depression can lead to suicide.
- Depression can be effectively prevented and treated. Treatment usually involves either a talking therapy or antidepressant medication or a combination of these.
- Overcoming the stigma often associated with depression will lead to more people getting help.
- Talking with people you trust can be a first step towards recovery from depression.